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Waimea fire torches 10 acres on Saturday afternoon

WAIMEA — A group effort was needed to corral a brush fire of unknown origin on Saturday afternoon.

The blaze, which ended up torching approximately 10 acres, was reported shortly after 2 p.m. At that point, multiple firefighting units responded to property owned by Gay &Robinson located adjacent to Pa‘ula‘ula State Historic Site and Waimea River Mouth.

“When firefighters arrived on scene, they could not initially access the fire by vehicle due to its remote location,” the Kaua‘i Fire Department said in a statement on Sunday.

“Gay &Robinson personnel on-scene guided firefighters through their access gate and (began) mobilizing heavy equipment to assist in the response. Air 1 soon arrived on-scene and conducted water drops to knock down the blaze.

“With assistance from the landowner’s personnel, who established fire breaks with their water tenders, grader and backhoe, firefighters quickly gained control of the fire which left approximately 10 acres of brush scorched.”

Air 1 continued with water drops, as ground crews started to demobilize. Gay &Robinson personnel remained on-scene to monitor the area for hotspots.

Firefighters were able to clear the scene shortly after 5 p.m. No injuries nor road closures were reported. Fire department personnel responded from the Waimea, Hanapepe and Lihu‘e stations.

The fire served as a reminder that conditions are ripe for such incidents on the island. Those conditions led to the National Weather Service issuing a Fire Weather Watch for the leeward areas of Kaua‘i, which includes Kekaha and Waimea.

The weather watch took effect on Monday morning and runs until 6 a.m. Wednesday.

“A Fire Weather Watch means that critical fire weather conditions are forecast to occur,” the National Weather Service said in a statement on Sunday.

Those conditions include strong and gusty winds, as well as low humidity. Any fires that develop will likely spread quickly. As a result, outdoor burning is not advised.


Wyatt Haupt Jr., editor, can be reached at 808-245-0457 or
Source: The Garden Island

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